Delta variant Covid update shows its spread across South West England

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Public Health England has issued an update about the spread of the variants of Covid-19 coronavirus – such as the Delta strain that was first identified in India.

The update shows that variants that are of concern or under investigation have now been found in multiple lower Tier Local Authority areas in the South West of England.

Cornwall in the South West is currently hosting the G7 summit – and a dozen officers drafted in to police the event have been forced to self isolate after one of them tested positive for the Covid-19 coronavirus. Click here for in-depth coverage of the G7 Summit with Cornwall Live

The officer who tested positive was staying with 1,000 of his colleagues on a cruise ship that is being used to accommodate the army of police that are helping to guarding UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, US President Joe Biden and other world leaders,

However, Bristol is the area worst affected by variants, with more than 158 confirmed cases.

A spokesperson for the UK Government said that Novel genotyping tests are being used to detect the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant, giving a result for action within 48 hours. As cases of the variant continue to rise, the tests are helping to rapidly inform public health action.

“Data from these tests is available for the first time this week, as PHE Figures show that cases have risen by 29,892 to 42,323, says a statement on the Gov.UK website.

“The data indicates that over 90% of new COVID-19 cases in the UK are now the Delta variant, which continues to show a significantly higher rate of growth compared to the Alpha variant.”

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency, said: “With numbers of Delta variant cases on the rise across the country, vaccination is our best defence. If you are eligible, we urge you to come forward and be vaccinated. Remember that 2 doses provide significantly more protection than a single dose.

“However, while vaccination reduces the risk of severe disease, it does not eliminate it.

“With data showing that Delta is significantly more transmissible than Alpha, it is just as important as ever to follow public health advice, which has not changed. Get vaccinated, work from home where you can and remember ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times. These measures work, and they save lives.”

PHE data on number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation in South West England

Bath and North East Somerset

14

Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole

62

Bristol, City of

158

Cheltenham

20

Cornwall

5

Cotswold

5

Dorset

24

East Devon

<5

Exeter

9

Forest of Dean

9

Gloucester

49

Mendip

<5

Mid Devon

<5

North Devon

<5

North Somerset

15

Plymouth

5

Sedgemoor

<5

Somerset West and Taunton

<5

South Gloucestershire

40

South Hams

<5

South Somerset

<5

Stroud

14

Swindon

57

Teignbridge

<5

Tewkesbury

19

Torbay

7

Torridge

<5

Wiltshire

41



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